Internationally acclaimed artist Dashi Namdakov, whose sculpture, Genghis Khan was exhibited previously at Marble Arch, is due to make a return to London with a new exhibition entitled Between Heaven & Earth - opening at Halcyon Gallery Mayfair on 5th November. A press view will take place on 4 November at 5pm in the presence of the artist.
Namdakov’s syncretic art brings together shamanistic beliefs, Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism and Buryat folk art; his multifarious influences also span continents and ages. Namdakov’s sculptures belong to major private and public collections the world over including: The State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, The Russian Contemporary Art Museum in Moscow, Tibet House in New York and the Guangzhou Museum of Art in China.
Between Heaven & Earth (which coincides with Russian and Asian Art Weeks in London), comprises over 25 new sculptures, the culmination of three years’ work. The exhibition focuses on Dashi’s bronze sculptures of animals, both real and mythical which are incredibly opulent and magnificent in scale: a monumental bronze patinated dragon entitled Golden Dragon measures three and a half metres from tip to tail. Seven new unique sculptures include four oynx and bronze sculptures; two lapis lazuli pieces and one marble sculpture: Amazon. Other key unique pieces are King of The Beast which is decorated with 24 carat gold leaf; Grace which incorporates over a ton of onyx and Tiger and Bird, a lapis lazuli and bronze sculpture adorned with an ornate murano glass and gold leaf mosaic.
Also on display for the first time are twelve bronze animal sculptures which take inspiration from the Eastern Zodiac. These sculptures form part of the most recent Namdakov commission: The Centre of Asia which stands near the bank of the Yenisei River in Kyzyl, Russia. The monument was erected to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the entry of Republic of Tuva into Russia. It is said to be symbolic of the new spiritual and geographical centre of Asia.
“Animals make up most of Dashi’s work. Their plasticity testifies to great influence from the Russian academic school. You also feel the presence in them of Asiatic mythology that traditionally imparts animals with sacred meaning.” Nadezhda P. Komarova (Art Historian)
Preferring to work in bronze, ‘The most visually expressive material,’ according to Namdakov - he borrows from the casting traditions of the Italian masters. The semi-precious materials with which he works such as onyx, lapis lazuli and marble, are all specifically sourced and chosen to reflect the characters he depicts.
Inspired by the nomadic culture of the Eurasian steppes and their inseparable ties with nature and the animal world, Namdakov was himself immersed in the natural world throughout his childhood in Siberia. He says of the creatures he creates: “I close my eyes and perceive them as clearly as if I were watching a film.... I see various creatures, and they are living in harmony, but the world is more complicated than that.”
"Dashi Namdakov is without question a phenomenon in art: not only Buryat or Russian art-and not only modern art-but art as a whole, regardless of time or place." Elena F. Korolkova, Senior Researcher and Curator at the State Hermitage Museum